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Dental Assisting Department Overview


Smile About Being a Valuable Dental Care Team Member
Dental Assisting is a licensed dental profession dedicated to the oral health care for patients of all ages. As a vital member of the dental team, you are involved with assisting the dentist and the hygienist along with independently performing procedures. You will take x-rays, place sealants, take teeth impressions, and work directly with a dentist completing procedures essential to the oral health of patients. Other duties you might complete include treatment room and tray setups, infection control, patient record management, manipulation of dental materials and patient education. 

South Central College’s Dental Assisting programs meet the American Dental Association’s Commission on Dental Accreditation Standard for Dental Assisting. Once you successfully complete the program and the written board exams, you will be licensed through the Minnesota State Board of Dentistry. As part of the program, you complete foundational courses at the North Mankato campus, continue clinical courses at Minnesota State University-Mankato as part of a cooperative program with Dental Hygiene, and complete two internship rotations within the dental community.

The Dental Assisting Program at South Central College Includes:

  • Dental Technology
  • Dental Science
  • Oral Anatomy
  • Radiology
  • Dental Nutrition
  • Nitrous Oxide Sedation
  • CPR
  • First Aid
  • Dental Materials
  • Dental Practice Management
  • Safety

Core Competencies

  1. Demonstrate skill competency in oral/written communication and patient management.
  2. Demonstrate practical application of infection control, biohazards/quality assurance procedures, and treatment area maintenance.
  3. Demonstrate skills to collect medical/dental data, vital signs, dental charting, and maintain accurate patient records.
  4. Conduct extra-oral /intra-oral exams, radiographs, preliminary impressions, study casts and occlusal bite registrations.
  5. Demonstrate competencies skills and proficiency in tray set-ups, unit preparation, and medical emergency situations.
  6. Apply current dental assisting concepts and techniques through competency skill levels and clinical/laboratory dental assisting, expanded functions, general and specialty dental procedures.
  7. Demonstrate competency / skill in business office procedures and equipment, dental practice management systems, and financial transactions.

Department Faculty

Stephanie Culhane,   Jennifer Dumdei